Tag:Ned Colletti
Posted on: July 31, 2010 7:49 pm
 

Is Manny coming to end of the line in LA?

The Curious Case that is Manny Ramirez took another twist at the trade deadline Saturday when the Dodgers fielded offers for the disabled outfielder.

The door clearly has begun to crack open for his departure.

Question is, when?

After this season, when his two-year, $45 million contract expires?

In August, when he almost certainly will sail through waivers (and when it especially would be incumbent upon the Dodgers to investigate deals for him if they drop out of the pennant race)?

"This club is built with him as our left fielder," Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti said in a conference call shortly after Saturday's 4 p.m. EDT trade deadline passed. "We haven't had him for most of the year.

"That doesn't mean he can't provide us with some help the last couple of months."

Still, the man who stole headlines two Julys ago when the contending Dodgers scooped him up from Boston was back in them for a time in the final, crazy hours as clubs stampeded toward this year's trade deadline.

"We got a call from one team that offered us a very low dollar figure with no players attached to it," Colletti said in recapping the latest chapter in Mannywood. "That's what began it."

Though Colletti would divulge no specifics, industry sources have told CBSSports.com that it was the Chicago White Sox who came calling with ideas of installing Ramirez in the middle of their lineup as they work toward holding off Minnesota in the AL Central.

"Once it was out, a couple of teams called in the last 30, 45 minutes, but it was too cumbersome [to negotiate with the deadline closing in]" Colletti continued.

The GM would not confirm how many clubs phoned the Dodgers regarding Ramirez, only saying, tongue-in-cheek, that it was "a few more than one and less than 30."

Ramirez has full no-trade powers, but given his trouble with his legs this season, it is believed he would accept a deal to an AL club that would allow him a soft landing into a DH role.

"The team that had the strongest interest was trying to get another player that we had interest in with another club," Colletti said. "But that went by the wayside.

"We didn't start the rumor and we didn't float his name. The rumor was started by another team, and I'm not sure what they were trying to accomplish."

One industry source familiar with the White Sox suggested that it was all tied to Chicago's pursuit of Washington slugger Adam Dunn, that Chicago GM Kenny Williams was trying to bluff the Nationals.

The logic there would be that it was a gamble that the Nationals were more eager to rid themselves of Dunn than they let on, and the Ramirez rumors might pique their attention enough to go back to the White Sox and cut a deal for Dunn.

Whatever, no dice.

In the end, Nationals' GM Mike Rizzo called everyone's bluff and wound up keeping Dunn.

The Dodgers?

Well, first they need to get a healthy Ramirez back into their lineup.

Then, they need to climb back into the NL West race -- they opened Saturday trailing first-place San Diego by seven games, and they were 5 1/2 games behind San Francisco in the wild-card race. Then they lost a crushing 2-1 decision in San Francisco Saturday afternoon.

At some point then -- or during the process -- they'll assess.

One source close to the Ramirez talks Saturday said that "it has to be a good deal" for the Dodgers to trade Manny. And clearly, the Dodgers didn't think they were approached with one.

But with about $7 million remaining of his $20 million 2010 salary, Ramirez surely will pass through waivers, which will give the Dodgers freedom to trade him in August if they're approached with the right deal.

One very good question for now, though, is when the Dodgers might see him again.

Ramirez, 38, currently is on the disabled list for a third time this season, this time with a strained calf. He did not even travel with the Dodgers on their current trip to San Diego and San Francisco, opting to rehab at the club's Arizona spring training facility, and sources say the club has grown increasingly disenchanted with him this season as he has separated himself from the rest of the clubhouse.

The leg problems make him even more of a liability in the outfield, and his power has diminished significantly since last season's 50-game suspension for failing a test pertaining to baseball's performance-enhancement drug policy. In just 61 games this season (the Dodgers now have played 104), Ramirez has just eight homers and a .317 batting average.

When will Manny return?

"That's tough to say," Colletti said. "A week. Ten days, perhaps."

Colletti did very right by the Dodgers this week in adding speedy outfielder Scott Podsednik (from Kansas City), versatile infielder Ryan Theriot (Cubs), veteran starting pitcher Ted Lilly (Cubs) and closer/set-up man Octavio Dotel (Pirates). He's always been at his strongest during the July and August trading periods.

The roster is fortified and manager Joe Torre has even more options.

But as for Ramirez, whose production is diminishing and whose honeymoon in Hollywood is finished ... what's left?

Does the GM believe Manny will finish the season a Dodger?

"I sure hope so," Colletti said, pausing and choosing his words carefully. "I think he will be.

"Yeah, I guess I believe it. How's that?"

Posted on: July 28, 2010 10:01 pm
Edited on: July 28, 2010 11:10 pm
 

Dodgers acquire Podsednik, eye pitching help

The Dodgers made a trade Wednesday, but it wasn't one to strengthen their rotation and solve their dilemma of who's going to start Saturday against San Francisco.

Instead, they struck for an outfielder, acquiring veteran Scott Podsednik from Kansas City for a couple of minor-league prospects while continuing their search for a starting pitcher.

As for whether the Dodgers will be able to add a starter by Saturday's trade deadline -- they've inquired about Houston's Roy Oswalt and the Cubs' Ted Lilly, among others -- general manager Ned Colletti said it's still too early to know.

"Tough to tell," Colletti said early Wednesday evening. "You take it as it comes. This deal [Podsednik] came about. You don't have to put it in order. You get them done when you can."

Looking to beef up their versatility and add depth with Manny Ramirez disabled with a strained calf, the Dodgers sent two minor leaguers -- Triple-A catcher Lucas May and Double-A right-hander Elisaul Pimentel -- to the Royals for Podsedik. No money exchanged hands -- the Dodgers will pay the roughly $600,000 owed to Podsednik for the remainder of the year. His contract includes a $2 million club option for 2011 or a $100,000 buyout.

It's not a blockbuster deal, but with Ramirez on the DL for a third time this season and with the Dodgers running third in the NL West, the acquisition of Podsednik at least gives manager Joe Torre another option. Especially with another outfielder, Reed Johnson, also on the disabled list with a back injury and not expected to return for at least three or four more weeks.

"He brings a lot of different things to the club," Colletti said. "He's a good hitter -- his average is over .300 -- he drives in a lot of runs for hitting in a high spot in the order, he has speed, he can add a lot of different dimensions to the club.

"That he played on a World Series winner in Chicago a few years ago is also a plus."

In 94 games for Kansas City this season, Podsednik hit .310 and stole 30 bases. He also posted a .352 on-base percentage.

The Dodgers hope Podsednik arrives in San Diego in time for Thursday's 3:35 p.m. PDT start. He'll bring a 15-game hitting streak with him.

Meantime, the Dodgers right now are going with "to be determined" as the starter opposite San Francisco's Barry Zito on Saturday. Likely, it will be right-hander John Ely, who was optioned to Triple-A Albuquerque on July.

Unless, of course, Colletti pulls a rabbit out of his cap for the Dodgers on the trade market.

Posted on: April 29, 2010 5:56 pm
Edited on: April 30, 2010 12:10 pm
 

Angels' Hunter advises Kemp on Dodgers' flap

Veteran Angels center fielder Torii Hunter, dismayed over his friend Matt Kemp being called out by Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti this week for poor defense and regressing since signing a two-year, $10.95 million contract, says he intends to call Kemp and offer some quick advice.

"I'm going to make a phone call and tell him to keep his cool," Hunter, 34, told CBSSports.com Wednesday night before flying home to Texas to spend Thursday's off-day with his family. "I don't know what was said or why it was said, but it's something you keep in-house.

"That's one of my buddies right there. I know he plays the game hard. I thought he was a pretty good outfielder."

The outgoing Hunter over the years has become a mentor to several young players around the game, and he and Kemp have become especially tight over the past year.

They spent some time together this winter, with Kemp staying at Hunter's house in Dallas for two weeks while the two worked out at the Athlete's Performance Institute.

Kemp, 25, got to know Hunter's family then, and the two Los Angeles center fielders continue to talk "once or twice a week", according to Hunter.

Colletti's comments to KABC radio in Los Angeles this week started a firestorm of emotion around the Dodgers, and Colletti did not back down a day later when, among other things, he told reporters in New York, "If this is the last day of the season and people are voting for the Gold Glove, his name is not even on the ballot. It's a shame that he would go from where he was a year ago to revert back to when the ball goes up in the air and you're not sure where it's going, or if it's going to get caught."

Though Kemp, Colletti and Dodgers manager Joe Torre talked following the team's series-ending loss to the Mets in New York on Wednesday, Kemp's agent, the former big league pitcher Dave Stewart, fueled the controversy by ripping Colletti in Thursday's Los Angeles Times.

Hunter, an 11-year veteran, just shook his head Wednesday night.

"Hopefully, this will make him a better man and he'll come back stronger," Hunter said of Kemp. "Ned Colletti is his boss. I've never heard of a GM calling a player out like that. I'm just in awe right now. Matt needs to be the bigger man and not come out and say anything.

"All Matt Kemp can do is go out and play ball, and play hard. I know from talking to him all the time, he plays hard. He wants to win."

Hunter said he checks in with Kemp by phone regularly "just to see how he's feeling, where his head is at."

Right now, it may take a few extra conversations to gauge that.

Posted on: October 15, 2009 7:25 pm
Edited on: October 15, 2009 10:15 pm
 

Dodgers in divorce court?

LOS ANGELES -- Who gets Tommy Lasorda in the Frank and Jamie McCourt split?

Los Angeles is buzzing about the bust-up of the Dodger owners, who were named as the area's "Power Couple of the Year" in 2008 by the Los Angeles Business Journal.

The repercussions could be immense, and the great fear is that the split will affect the Dodgers much the same way the Padres went down the commode with John and Becky Moore's divorce.

Though the timing of the public confirmation was inconvenient, to say the least, with the Dodgers set to open the NL Championship Series against the Phillies, those connected with the Dodgers have known for much of the summer that there's been trouble in paradise for the McCourts.

So as far as any immediate distractions, forget it. The only thing that's changed for the Dodgers is that knowledge of the McCourt's separation now has extended beyond the inner circle.

"It's a very private thing, and I respect that. ... It's not going to affect anything we do," Dodgers manager Joe Torre said. "My players and myself, we have a job to do, and whatever is going on there is certainly not going to affect what we do here. As I say, it's unfortunate and I feel badly, but it's one of those things that happen in life."

"I've experienced no difference in how we do our business," general manager Ned Colletti said. "On a personal level, I'm saddened by it."

No divorce papers have been filed, so it's premature to know for sure what it going to happen. But California is a community property state, meaning, couple split their assets 50-50 in divorces. That simple fact alone seems to spell big trouble ahead for the Dodgers -- just as it did for the Padres -- unless the McCourts reconcile.

Because if they don't, sources say neither one likely is financially liquid enough to buy out the other one.

Meantime, though Frank McCourt's lawyer told the Los Angeles Times that Frank is the sole owner of the Dodgers, that seems disingenuous because if the couple divorces, Jamie would be entitled to 50 percent of all assets failing a pre-nuptial agreement.

"Speculation about a potential sale of the team is rubbish," Grossman told the Los Angeles Times. "Frank McCourt is the sole owner. He has absolutely no intention of selling this team now or ever."

Aside from the sole owner stuff, he has no intention of selling the team ... ever? Ever? Really?

Colletti could be most immediately affected by the split because his contract is up after next season and, after building the team that finished with the best record in the NL this season -- 95 wins -- he should be in line for a multi-year extension.

Now, who knows?

"I'm fine," Colletti said when asked about the contract issue before Game 1 here Thursday. "I'll always be fine. I'll be wherever I'm supposed to be."

Colletti maintained that whatever is going on with ownership, Los Angeles is still the place he wants to be.

"I've made it known that I'd like to stay," he said. "We've had four good years here as a group. We've been to the postseason three times. We have the best record in the National League today. We struggled with Manny [Ramirez] being gone for 50 days.

"We have an investment here in time, energy and effort. Not just me -- everyone."

Likes: Philadelphia making its pitching up as it goes along. ... Boston Globe columnist Dan Shaughnessy writing the other day of Boston's Game 3 loss to the Angels that, before that day, closer Jonathan Papelbon's ERA was the same as John Blutarsky's grade-point average: 0.00. Fabulous line. ... A new Nick Hornby book to read: Juliet, Naked. Always a good thing when Hornby writes a new book. High Fidelity and About a Boy remain among my favorites. ... Great morning run Thursday morning around the Rose Bowl and through Pasadena's Arroyo Seco. Terrific.

Dislikes: Sure wish legendary Philadelphia broadcaster Harry Kalas were with us at this NL Championship Series. ... No sellout in Los Angeles?

Rock 'N' Roll Lyric of the Day:

"We'd been living together for a million years
"Ah ah ah ah ah ah ah ah
"But now it feels so strange out of the atmosphere
"Ah ah ah ah ah ah ah ah
"And then the jukebox plays a song I used to know
"Ah ah ah ah ah ah ah ah
"And now I'm staring at the bodies as they're dancing so slow
"Ah ah ah ah ah ah ah ah"

-- Greg Kihn Band, The Breakup Song

Posted on: December 9, 2008 1:54 pm
 

Dodgers meet with Boras, discuss Manny

LAS VEGAS -- The deafening silence between Manny Ramirez and the Los Angeles Dodgers has broken. The Dodgers met with agent Scott Boras late Monday night and discussed Ramirez and "other" Boras clients, Los Angeles general manager Ned Colletti told CBSSports.com.

Earlier Monday, Colletti said the Dodgers had yet to receive an answer from either their two-year offer to Ramirez last month or their offer of salary arbitration to Ramirez last week. Presumably, even without answers, discussions of what it would take to keep Ramirez a Dodger are back on track. For a night, at least.

Posted on: December 8, 2008 4:36 pm
 

Dodgers appear close with Casey Blake

LAS VEGAS -- Don't be surprised if the Dodgers and third baseman Casey Blake reach an agreement in the very near future.

Blake's agent, Jim McDowell, has been holding out for a three-year offer, and the Dodgers appear poised to meet it -- while the Minnesota Twins indicated the other day they would not budge beyond two years.

"If we can get Casey locked up, it would be a huge piece for us," Dodgers GM Ned Colletti said. "We'd be able to move Blake DeWitt over to second base. Casey's character, he's team-oriented, he's a grinder.

"We love having players like that."

Category: MLB
Posted on: December 8, 2008 4:27 pm
Edited on: December 8, 2008 4:31 pm
 

Manny: The sounds of silence

LAS VEGAS -- The Los Angeles Dodgers continue to wait for Manny Ramirez.

And we mean that in every literal sense of the word.

Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti said Monday that the club never heard a word from Ramirez's camp following their offer of salary arbitration -- which Ramirez declined on Sunday.

"You would think an offer to salary arbitration would open the door to a conversation," Colletti said.

This was after the Dodgers offered a two-year deal, believed to be with a club option for a third year, for a reported $25 million a year roughly a month ago.

"I just find it curious that we made an offer and never heard back, and then we made an arbitration offer and never heard back," Colletti said. "Maybe we have to look into the communications we're using."

Category: MLB
Posted on: November 3, 2008 11:46 pm
 

Notes from the GM meetings

DANA POINT, Calif. -- In the immediate aftermath of his team being eliminated from the National League Championship Series last month, slugger and impending free agent Manny Ramirez quipped, "Gas is up, and so am I."

With the price of gasoline now dropping, though ... well, the Dodgers couldn't be so lucky. Could they?

"That's a very good point," Dodgers general manger Ned Colletti said here Monday. "We'll have to check the gas market before I go to speak with him.

"I know how the fans feel. I know how we feel. I know what he did for 10 weeks. He did as good as anybody could do in the regular season and postseason."

As of late Monday afternoon, Colletti hadn't spoken formally with Ramirez's agent, Scott Boras, about a deal that would keep the slugger in a Dodgers' uniform. The GM meetings here were just firing up, though Boras did walk through the lobby and, ostensibly, toward some meetings of his own later in the day.

Colletti listed the Dodgers' priorities as addressing the left side of the infield (where third baseman Casey Blake and shortstop Rafael Furcal are free agents), the bullpen and adding a starting pitcher.

The Dodgers are expected to be a player in the CC Sabathia negotiations and are discussing the possibility of acquiring San Diego's Jake Peavy in trade.

Asked if he could foresee a financial scenario in which both Ramirez and Sabathia would wind up as Dodgers in 2009, Colletti said, "I think that would be difficult."

Impossible?

"I think it would be difficult."

The Dodgers' recent history with players such as Furcal and Andruw Jones is to offer shorter-term deals -- two, three years -- and a bit more money. Ramirez will be seeking top dollar and certainly should have some suitors. That way, both the club and the player have a chance to re-evaluate the situation.

That said, Colletti said the club wouldn't necessarily be scared off by the common thinking that Ramirez busted his butt for them last summer because he was auditioning for a new contract, and that once he obtains that contract he'll start giving half-effort at times again.

"I think the time he spent with Joe (Torre, manager), with the baseball front office and with his teammates wasn't too long," Colletti said. "Does that continue ... you can ask that questions of anybody and everybody. You're going to have to trust with that kind of commitment, what he's going to continue to do for the organization."

-- Yes, Colletti agreed, Andruw Jones needs to report to spring training in better shape. "That would be a start," the GM said.

But he is clinging to the hope that Jones has something left.

"We have two of the better people who understand hitting, Don Mattingly and Jeff Pentland," Colletti said. "Both ... believe he's still a capable hitter. He's got some fundamental things in his swing that he was having a hard time getting out. He's 31 years old. We don't doubt that there's still a lot of ability."

-- Mets GM Omar Minaya doesn't sound like a man ready to sweep Manny Ramirez off of his feet. "Pitching is our priority," Minaya said. To that end, though, he declined comment on Francisco Rodriguez, who set a new record with 62 saves for the Angels this season. "I don't want to tip my hand," he said.

-- The Mets are expected to go hard after Rodriguez, and they, like St. Louis and several other clubs, are expected to talk with left-hander Brian Fuentes.

-- Rick Thurman, the agent for Fuentes, expects to talk with Cleveland and Detroit as well, though he said Monday at midday that he had "nothing lined up." As for New York? "I think New York would be a great place," Thurman said. "(Fuentes) thrives under pressure."

-- St. Louis general manager John Mozeliak lists his priorities as middle infield and left-handed relievers. Edgar Renteria, recently cut loose by Detroit, could return to the Cardinals. As for the lefty relievers, Fuentes and Joe Beimel are possibilities.

-- Atlanta and Seattle each had scouts speak Sunday with the field manager of right-hander Junichi Tazawa, pitching for Enous in Japan's Industrial League. Tazawa is expected to sign with a major-league team and, because he's in the Industrial League, is not required to go through the posting process that others, such as Boston's Daisuke Matsuzaka, have.

-- Among the first priorities for new Seattle GM Jack Zdurencik is the little ol' matter of finding a manager. Expect him to interview former Milwaukee skipper Ned Yost; former Pittsburgh manager Lloyd McClendon and Chicago White Sox bench coach Joey Cora. He could look to new San Diego bench coach Ted Simmons -- the two established a good working relationship in Milwaukee. Padres GM Kevin Towers said Monday that he would grant Simmons permission to interview for a managerial job if asked.

 
 
 
 
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